The rapid access lung cancer clinic opened in December 2010. There are 5 rapid access lung cancer clinics, one return clinic and a “virtual nodule service” (allowing review of CT scans and direct contact with patient without hospital visit). The Rapid Access Lung Clinic is an outpatient/ day case diagnostic service, which allows patients to undergo a series of investigations in a timely fashion. In order to reduce the time period to diagnosis, the initial investigations are offered to patients within days of their first visit. An information booklet accompanies first appointments explaining to patients what will happen at clinic, and when subsequent appointments are likely to take place. Upon review as a new patient with suspected lung cancer a number of tests may be ordered. Some of these investigations are described under the general respiratory clinic section. If cancer is suspected, your case is discussed at a weekly Thoracic Multidisciplinary Conference, where surgeons, chest physicians, oncology doctors and other cancer care specialists decide on the best diagnosis and treatment plans for you.
We aim to see all patients referred to the RALC clinic within 10 working days. Referral guidelines and referral form available at the end of this page. This form can be faxed to the department of respiratory medicine at Fax: (021) 49 22391
For further details of the lung cancer service contact the cancer control office CUH Tel: (021) 49 20453 or contact Sharon Guiry our lung cancer nurse specialist through CUH switchboard 021 4546400.
CT Guided Lung Biopsy
A lung biopsy is a procedure to take a sample of your lung tissue. A CT scan is used to obtain an image of your lung. The image is then used to guide a fine needle to the right place in your lung and collect small pieces of tissue. The tissue is sent to the laboratory to be analysed.
When your biopsy is due to start, a member of staff will show you into the scan room where you will meet the doctor. The doctor will explain the procedure to you, how the biopsy will be performed and the risks involved. The doctor will get your permission to go ahead
You will be asked to lie on the CT scanner table, either on your front or back. The doctor will then perform the scan to find the abnormality and area to be biopsied
When the abnormal area is found, the doctor will clean the skin, may put a mark onto the skin and will use a small needle to inject local anaesthetic to numb the area
During the biopsy procedure the doctor will ask you to hold your breath for a few seconds. Two or three samples will be taken to allow the laboratory get as much information as possible. The biopsy procedure takes approximately 30 minutes.
A PET (positive emission tomography) is a detailed scan that helps identify the site and extent of cancer. PET scanning is provided in a timely manner at Cork University Hospital. Diabetes may inhibit the interpretation of results and this should be mentioned to your doctor.